The Review Board

Where Honesty Never Ends.

The Review Board on Truth’s Blood

truths-blood1

Truth’s Blood by Tyler Roberts

Blog | Amazon (print) | Kindle

Side Note:  This is the first joint review from myself and Mr. Controversy, so brace yourselves…lol

No Labels’ Views (with a sprinkle of spoiler)

No Labels

No Labels

One thing I can say: Truth’s Blood is one of the longest books to date I’ve had to review thus far. I had to really take my time to go through each and every page.

At first, I must admit, it took me a while to get into it. The juices really didn’t start flowing for me until about Chapter 8.

Source: keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk

Source: keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk

In some points it seemed a bit drawn out, and in others, some of the action bordered close to the unrealistic–like Monk being a borderline superhero, almost indestructible until close to the end.

There were also places where the dialogue was squeezed together (issues with formatting) as well as the political dialogue being slightly excessive.

Despite it all, I found this to be a great read for many reasons. One is the strong connection between what’s happening in the book and current events, such as the state of unemployment, the national debt, and cutting spending on federal programs. There were also characters in the novel that paralleled the general public. Cliffson, the farmer, who’s dependent on the land and thinks depending on the government is hurting America more than helping it. Thomas, the college professor, who is a fan of government, and up until all of the events, believes government had all the people’s best interests at heart.

However, Truth’s Blood doesn’t cover the full gambit when it comes to people. It seemed certain aspects were stereotypical, which came out in some of the dialogue. There was one scene when Thomas wanted Cliffson’s help, and he thought Cliffson wasn’t going to give it to him. Then, Thomas says, “It’s because I’m black, isn’t it?”

Source: wrestlingwithtext.com

Source: wrestlingwithtext.com

Side Note:  Honestly, up to that point, I hadn’t thought that Thomas was black. It just seemed farfetched, like it came out of nowhere. I mean, did Cliffson give him a funny look or something? It just seemed to be a bit of a stretch.

Also, there are other pockets of society that Truth’s Blood didn’t address. There’s an assumption that those who depend on the government are lazy and don’t want to work. Yet it doesn’t take into account people who have lost their jobs and have to depend on unemployment until they get on their feet. Nor does it consider the underemployed, who are working hard and yet still cannot get by. It also feeds into the theory that city folks believe country folks are dumb, and country folks believe that city folks have no idea how to truly survive. In addition, there are also statements involving the old versus the new—comparing older generations’ survival skills versus the current generations’ survival skills. There is a belief throughout the book that the younger generation isn’t fully equipped to survive all of the tragedy that has occurred.

It also would have been nice to have seen some more female characters, especially those that had the same type of strength as Cliffson’s wife.

It doesn’t allow a lot of room for gray, but Truth’s Blood does give a depiction of some of the attitudes that exist in the modern day.

Overall, Truth’s Blood is deeper than a novel. It is a write that warrants conversation across different generations and different subcultures and deserving of a read.

Now, I present Mr. Controversy.

Mr. Controversy

Mr. Controversy

“Truth’s Blood” by Mr. Tyler Roberts examines a plausible and potentially real scenario that may happen in the very near future.

Set in a not too distant year of 2016, the United States Government has overstepped their boundaries; owing their debtors (China) A LOT of money and China has come to collect. Lives are shattered to where riots break out, and people are trying to make it as Inflation is at a sickening level. And when the money is not repaid in a timely fashion, China pulls the “Landlord” Card: shutting off Worldwide Utilities and doing what is necessary for the American Government to repay what they owe.

The story revolves around Cliffson Lang: an older blue-collar farmer who knew what America was once upon a time: The Land of Opportunity where there was plenty of work and minimal worry. Now, Cliffson sees what is going on with the U.S.A. at this time, and is very aware that things will not get any better as Constitutional Rights are stripped away from those who elected the Government Officials who are to uphold those Rights.

The First Amendment being the biggest Right stripped from the American People.

Oddly enough, the way that the story goes as far as this aspect, this similarly reflects certain aspects of American Life as we know it. People are mindlessly aligning with the Government and biting their tongues, in fear of turning up missing or worse due to speaking ill of the Nation in which they live (WikiLeaks comes to mind IMMEDIATELY; why does the Government need to hide things from its people? Fear is the first thing that comes to mind). Can you imagine where the Right to Run Your Mouth was suddenly taken away from you, and your Life is threatened because you spoke out against the Government (OOPS! Many people are on the run for That Very Reason)?

This story also revolves around Thomas Jefferson: a white-collar, well respected senior professor at Valley University in Salem, Oregon. Thomas Jefferson instructs history and sociology. He is a six-figure kind of guy who has a decent job, a decent car, and an “All-American” family. Thomas, from what I feel, is one of those types who I view as the one with the copy of the Wall Street Journal shooing away homeless people daily as he makes his way to his Mercedes Benz.

*SIDEBAR*
To be one of THOSE GUYS.
Well… No. Not even; not MY style.

Thomas Jefferson, even if it is for a brief moment, had a bit of a revelation (“Upon resuming their trip home, Thomas was confronted with a reality he found hard to ignore. Have I been so insulated in my world of academia that I missed what is happening right outside my door? He couldn’t bring himself to believe it was true, but the mental wrestling match would continue all the way home.”).

Even if the 1% people think that things are hunky-dory or going great in their little bubble, they need to come to terms that the grass is NOT green on the other side of the fence:

There are muddy patches of browning grass, dirty polluted water, and piles of dog shit strewn about; it is the 99% who have to traverse that terrain daily.

There are several lines spoken in the story that gave me a lot to think about, and more or less confirmed that there is more than one person who is thinking as critically as well as logically as I (“The two parties are one and the same. There’s no difference. If you ignore what they say and look at what they do, what do we have? Wars, debt, welfare, dependency and lies. It makes no difference which party’s in office.” as well as “Truth’s blood ran in the streets, but the sheeple were more concerned with their video games, celebrities and voting themselves riches from the treasury.”  These are lines that leaves indents in my thoughts).

Mr. Roberts connected with my mind in the critical thinker’s department by not only pointing out the obvious for those who are paying attention, but pointing them out to where it would make the staunchest closed-minded individuals reexamine what they REALLY thought that they know/knew.

I understand that Mr. Roberts puts a quote at the start of each chapter to give the readers an idea of what to expect. For some, it may be a bit much. For me, it does serve a purpose, and a pretty decent one (To Each its Own, I suppose…).

To be straight with you, this story to me gives the reader a look at the 99% vs. the 1% differentials. As I have pointed out, Blue-Collar and White-Collar main characters. It shows the differences of the two status classes, yet at the end of the day, we are all the same. Whether people feel that they need to work hard for what they have versus those who are under the belief that things should be handed to you on a silver platter, China doesn’t care. In this story, as I have pointed out, CHINA IS PISSED. They see the American People as nothing more than collateral damage due to the U.S. Government’s neglect and wasteful “We Don’t Give a Hot Damn” mentality.

*SIDEBAR*

This reminds me of a commercial that I saw a couple years ago where the Chinese spoke on how America was its biggest borrower, and we will wind up (or are) working for them (China)…

Mr. Roberts did a pretty bang up job in the description department, which is ALWAYS an attention grabber for me. I always desire and enjoy being able to visualize the story unfolding and hearing the voices of the characters. For this, I give an “A”.

Mr. Roberts takes a very political route in his write, from what I have read. For those who dabble in the political realm may very well enjoy this story. Mr. Roberts’ platform to examine a very real (and what people may call) Post-Apocalyptic scenario is something I would actually like to see play out on a movie screen. Granted it has a slow start and the political conversations could be draining for those who may feel overwhelmed and a bit of an overload on this topic. I personally feel that this story is deserving of a chance.

Engage your Logic (I know that you have it), apply it to “Truth’s Blood” by Mr. Tyler Roberts, and think for a few moments:

WHAT IF this REALLY happens?

Thanks for partaking of the first joint take on The Review Board.  We can never get enough of likes, shares, and subscribes.  Also, make sure to like our page on Facebook.

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About nolabels

I have an appreciation for the unique, love for all types of art, and fierce attractions to brilliant intellectuals (from book smarts to street smarts). Lover of humanity but feel humans have lost their way, just trying to stay true to myself as conformity threatens to take me away. Simply one head, many crowns: Author. Reviewer. Columnist.

6 comments on “The Review Board on Truth’s Blood

  1. Pingback: Joint Review: TRB on Truth’s Blood | No Labels…Unleashed

  2. epscott
    July 31, 2013

    I really enjoyed this review. You guys did such a great job. This is the first review I’ve read by either/both of you and if this is any indication of the quality, I’m in for ‘following’. Thx 🙂

    • nolabels
      July 31, 2013

      Thanks so much, epscott. Your feedback definitely means a lot.

  3. Tyler Roberts
    July 31, 2013

    I enjoyed both of your reviews and think your points are right on the money. The background idea for the story comes from my own amazement at how mankind seems to be incapable of learning from past mistakes, clearly evident with even a cursory glance at history. Using history as my guide, I applied the lessons we can learn from the past to the current state of the U.S. to write a fictional story. This is my debut novel and there is always much to learn. One thing that has become apparent is that I took too long setting the stage with histories lessons. This applies to some of the dialog and somewhat slow beginning to the book. In my enthusiasm of using history as a guide I probably got a little carried away. So you make valid points with regards to the beginning of the book being a tad slow, which I am in agreement with. (It’s tough being a rookie) 🙂

    One thing I would like to point out, that has become an interesting point of discussion, is how many of the points made are viewed as political, whereas each point can clearly be backed up with what history teaches us. Sadly, our world has become so politicized, right down to the soap, light bulbs, toilets and appliances we use in our own homes, that it’s easy to mistake the truth of history for a political statement. The sad part about that is when someone takes a political position, they often miss the lessons history has to teach. Mr. Controversy made a good point when he made note of the line in the book that says… “The two parties are one and the same. There’s no difference. If you ignore what they say and look at what they do, what do we have? Wars, debt, welfare, dependency and lies. It makes no difference which party’s in office.” This gets at the heart of what the book is attempting to convey.

    No labels, you made the following comment… “It seemed certain aspects were stereotypical, which came out in some of the dialogue. There was one scene when Thomas wanted Cliffson’s help, and he thought Cliffson wasn’t going to give it to him. Then, Thomas says, “It’s because I’m black, isn’t it?” I want to be clear about what I was doing here which was basically playing with the readers minds a bit. I did not want to identify Thomas’ ethnic background early in the story. Instead I wanted people to draw their own image of the man, based upon what he did and who he was. I realize there was some risk in this and want to assure you there was NO intent to apply any sort of stereotyping here. Oddly it worked a bit in the opposite way. Readers were allowed to read about Thomas and picture him as they wanted. At some point I had to clarify Thomas background and the argument you refer to was the place to do it. As you will recall, Cliffson also makes a statement during that argument… “and as long as you remain in this house, you’ll do well to remember there is no white, black, or any other color to be found here. People are just people.” So yes, it was kind of risky, but I wanted people to see they sometimes picture people a certain way when reading about their economic social status.

    I’m getting kind of long here so let me just say how much I appreciate both of you taking the time to read my book. As I said, this is my first novel and constructive feedback such as you have provided helps me to be a better writer. I am truly grateful. Mr. Controversy, I love that you seemed to dial right into many of the things I was attempting to accomplish here. No labels, I want to assure you that in the sequel there will be another strong woman developed to take the place of Jean. I hated bumping her off, but given the dangerous world they are all living I didn’t believe any character should be safe and wrote it up that way. And one more note, in the sequel, with the old world gone, there wont be near the “political” landscape necessary to set the stage and there will purposely be much less of it, though I will continue to be guided by the things history has to teach us.

    Your reviews are terrific and many thanks to both of you!
    Tyler Roberts

  4. nolabels
    July 31, 2013

    Tyler, no need to apologize for getting long winded. 🙂

    I do appreciate your clarification on Thomas. It was quite an intriguing element. It was as if you were conducting your own sociology test: to gauge how people would perceive Thomas. To me, Thomas came off as very educated yet a bit sheltered to the way government really operated, and that it stopped being “for the people, by the people” a long time ago. I didn’t see color, just a man trying to come to grips with what was going on around him. I believe the shattering of Thomas’ rose colored glasses was necessary in his development as a man as well as his survival.

    I was really able to connect with the hard working farmer in the story. My late grandfather was a farmer; he really loved growing his own crops and he appreciated nature and helping his fellow man. Cliffson’s humanitarian traits really hit home for me because my grandfather (I deem him my father because he raised me) was the same way. But he also experience the same frustration at Cliffson–frowning on people’s ability to not be self sufficient (always holding out their hand, begging), yet still trying to stay the course and help his fellow man.

    You have the makings of many gardens of thought; let’s see what Truth Blood’s sequel has to offer.

  5. Tyler Roberts
    July 31, 2013

    We share some common background. My grandparents were farmers also and I spent many years working on farms myself. It was great experience to draw from while writing the book. You might enjoy a blog of mine and the link is below. I began it at the request of friends who wanted to follow along with my beekeeping hobby, but it has evolved in to much more. This time of year there is not a lot of bee “news” to report, so you will find others things there, many are garden related. There will soon be honey to harvest if we are lucky and then the photos and articles about the bees will resume.
    http://organictruths.wordpress.com/

    I want to say again, I’m impressed with your reviews and I’m going to become a follower of your blog. Its good stuff. 🙂

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